Monday, February 16, 2015

Strong message from Archbishop Soc Villegas, CBCP head: "Speak the truth!"

Socrates Buenaventura Villegas is the curent Archbishop of Lingayen-Dagupan, Pangasinan and is the head of the Catholic Bishops' Conference of the Philippines (CBCP)
SOCRATES B. VILLEGAS

TRUTH AND ACCOUNTABILITY
The President and his advisers must give a full and satisfactory accounting of their actions in respect to this tragic loss. The targets of the SAF operations were characterized as "high value targets". If the police went after them, it can only be because they were ordered to do so. Policemen do not order themselves, not even members of the Special Action Force. Indeed, that is what corroborated statements now clearly establish: The decision was made on the highest levels to go after these "high value targets". The only thing that was awaited was "the window of opportunity", a judgment that is made by people on the ground.
Questions call for unequivocal and truthful answers. Lives were needlessly lost because in many ways the operation was covert. Why, for one, were the highest-ranking official of the Philippine National Police and his civilian superior, the Secretary of Interior and Local Government, left out of the loop of information, consultation and command? It seems that a suspended police officer played more than a merely advisory role. Why should he have been giving orders? And if he was in fact issuing orders and commands, should it not be clear that his authority to do so, precisely because he was laboring under a legitimate order of suspension, emanated from higher levels?
The concealment of truth or the foisting of deliberate falsehood even to shield one's superiors from embarrassment or to spare them indictment is always a moral wrong, especially in the context of legal processes and under oath. When one swears to tell the truth and invokes the help of God, one is morally obligated to speak the truth. We therefore urge all witnesses and all those in possession of information material to the resolution of facts in issue to speak the truth at all times.

Susong Dalaga Hill

Susong Dalaga Hill
Susong Dalaga Hill from Bagtasan isthmus

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